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Prior D-amphetamine experience has been reported to enhance appetitive Pavlovian conditioning. The present study assessed the involvement of the mesoamygdaloid dopamine projection in this effect. Bilateral post-session intra-amygdala infusions of the D3 dopamine receptor antagonist, L-nafadotride, or vehicle were given during acquisition of a Pavlovian association in sensitised and unsensitised rats. During these sessions, subjects received presentations of a stimulus (CS+) paired with 10% sucrose availability. A second stimulus (CS-) was also presented but never paired with sucrose. Sensitised animals infused post-session with vehicle acquired a Pavlovian conditioned approach response during CS+ presentations more rapidly than controls, as we have shown previously. However, post-session intra-amygdala L-nafadotride selectively retarded conditioned responding to the CS+ in both groups of animals, abolishing the difference between sensitised and unsensitised rats. These results, therefore, extend the evidence for the involvement of the mesoamygdaloid dopamine projection in Pavlovian conditioning, and the facilitation of associative learning following sensitisation. Copyright © 2002 Elsevier Science B.V.

Original publication




Journal article


Behavioural Brain Research

Publication Date





249 - 257